Greater Manchester Police are investigating several incidents of crowd trouble during Manchester City’s Carabao Cup match with Liverpool on Thursday night, including one that led to a 15-year-old girl being treated for head injuries.
The clubs issued a joint statement condemning the violence, which they called “hugely disappointing”. City won the match 3-2 to progress to the quarter-finals.
“We are aware of a number of objects, including coins and a smoke bomb, that were thrown during (Thursday’s) match,” GMP’s match commander, Superintendent Gareth Parkin, said. “We will be investigating the incidents and reviewing CCTV from the night.”
Two men were arrested on suspicion of trying to take a pyrotechnic into the stadium and a male for a racially aggravated public order offence. A 53-year-old man was assaulted after the game, police said.
The clubs said such incidents were wholly unacceptable, saying in a joint statement: “We are fully committed to working together to eradicate these issues from our fixtures. They have no place in football.”
The last few years have seen a number of incidents occur between supporters, with the latest meeting at Anfield in October marred by offensive graffiti about Hillsborough being written in the away section and allegations of chanting about the 1989 disaster, in which 97 fans died.
City also claimed coins had been thrown at their coaching staff, although a Liverpool investigation failed to find any evidence.
The Premier League champions also said their team bus was attacked by supporters as they tried to enter Anfield for the fixture, a repeat of a similar incident before the Champions League quarter-final between the sides at the same venue in April 2018.
Before Thursday night’s Carabao Cup match, Liverpool chief executive Billy Hogan and City counterpart Ferran Soriano wrote a joint letter to supporters to remind them of their responsibilities in an attempt to calm tensions.